Repeat Technique

(Source: Giphy.com)

Ok dammit, I guess I can’t stay away. I NEED to journal this.

So, today was my first class and well…it was somewhat frustrating, but I guess the first day of school is always frustrating. There’s still a lot of issues, confusion, and concern in regards to my major, but that’s beside point of this blog post.

Today we did a review of the Meisner repeat technique. Something I’m familiar with since I began training in Meisner back in 2015. The point of this technique is to break down any tension and barriers between the actors to find truthful moments. In essence it helps the actors deliver the text they’re given more realistically without over acting, or forcing oneself to dredge up past traumas for realistic emotions. We start by making simple observations first: noticing eye color or what shirt a person is wearing and we make a statement.

“You’re eyes are blue.”

Then the actor sitting opposite responds by repeating the statement

“My eyes are blue.”

From there we dig deeper and try to identify discomfort, or further details about the physical things that we see. What we can’t do is make a judgment. I can’t say “you’re wearing an ugly shirt” as opposed to saying “your shirt has lots of colors in it.”

Once we reach the the advanced stage, we begin by sitting in silence, make an observation, repeat the observation, and sit in silence once again. There’s also a balance of power that comes into play, meaning one person can’t make all the observations while the other repeats. The partner I had seemed to struggle with making observations, which is how we ended up in a staring contest much like the GIF I used above. After we finished the exercise, our professor asked why we reached a stalemate? My partner responded by saying he had so much to say but not sure how to phrase it. Um, ok. I’m going to pass it off as him being young and unfamiliar with the brutal honesty that comes with this practice, and his politeness was kicking in.

Now I’m left wondering what was on his mind

The Big Move

(Source: DIYLOL.COM)

Just a couple of more weeks before I jet off to another land. I’m a roller coaster of emotions, but I will be alright. The big stuff is still yet to come:

•Wardrobe

•Packing

•Having all of the necessary documents

•Energy

A couple of things about this move are making me a little nervous. For starters, even though I have proof of acceptance to the school, medical insurance, money for cost of living, a valid passport, and accommodation, the immigration officer is well within their rights to block me from entering the country. I’m a U.S. Citizen, and unfortunately my country is not in good standing with the world right now. This is a valid reason to not permit me to study in Ireland.

The other concern is when I get there, will I be approved to work part-time? When meeting with the second round of immigration officers, I have to prove my finances by way of bank statements and additional income. I really NEED to work while I’m there. My family is not rich and we still have a slew of money issues.

I’m trying to hope for the best though.

As of right now, my notices were put in for work and next week is my final week at two of my three jobs. The last one I’m working all the way until it’s time for me to jet off. I have no idea how I’m going to pull it all off, but I’m going to make it happen.

Falling Behind a Bit

(Source: Facebook.)

Welp, it’s not Sunday. Not only did I fail to post ‘Work Update pt. 2’, but I also didn’t post a new episode of ‘Save the Drama for Your Shamma’. My apologies it’s been a long week.

Here are the updates:

•I lost one of my shifts at the restaurant, which sucks because I was starting to build up some more cash. It also came at a time where I did get a windfall of money from my Grandfather to complete my move to Dublin; however, having extra padding is super helpful. I’m going to put in my resignation notice soon anyway, so there’s no use in complaining about it now.

•Other particulars for school have been in place for a while now with the exception of student accommodation. Mainly because I’m not using student financial aid and paying on my own instead. This means I have to find my own accommodation and it’s been difficult. Dublin is one of the hardest cities to find housing. There are plenty of apartments I could live in…if I was wealthy. Unfortunately I don’t have that kind of money to live in one of those spaces so it looks like my first semester may be spent living in a hostel.

•I WILL have a new episode of ‘Save the Drama for Your Shamma’ tomorrow and again on Sunday. I just had to get my life together in the meantime.

That’s all for now. I hope to have better news next time.

Men’s Makeup is Not Easy

(Source: fyeahbackstagebadger.tumblr.com)

There was an informercial playing on one of the TVs at work today and what I saw was absolutely tragic. The male lead had horribly blotchy makeup on. His forehead was partially made up. Only a portion of his cheek area was covered, the top of his nose, and a little on his chin. That’s it. Worse yet, the foundation was super yellow and the untouched parts of his face were super red. I’ve made a dramatic reenactment picture of what it looks like below:

(The yellow parts are the foundation and the red parts are the natural skin that was uncovered.)

I know that men’s stage and film makeup should be simple, but it’s really not. Like everyone else it boils down to good skin care, quality cosmetics, and proper skill. All three things must be in place for seamless application. For example:

(Source: Popsugar.com)

Daniel Kaluuya’s makeup artist, Amber Amos, blends his face to perfection for red carpet events. The big thing she makes sure of is that she has a smooth canvas to work on. While she uses high level brands on her client’s face, the breakdown is fairly easy to use for less expensive products as well.

1) The guy MUST have a washed face. Applying makeup to dirty skin is a no no for anyone, but lazy guys especially should heed this advice.

2) Moisturize. A good moisturizer is key, not only for smooth application, but for smooth skin in the long term. Otherwise their skin is dry and foundation has a bad habit of building up in the dry spots. They should be using eye cream too, but I may be asking too much.

3) A good primer is a necessity for a smooth canvas. It helps to fill in large pores and fine lines that would otherwise be enhanced by the foundation. Nivea Men’s After Shave is inexpensive and effective.

4) Ms. Amos uses Fenty Beauty on her client, but any prestige brand of foundation also works. I used to apply Bare Minerals Matte foundation on male customers when I worked there back in the day. Use it with the Soft Focus brush for light application.

5) Foundation alone would make anyone look ghastly, which is why bronzer is also helpful to add a little color to the face without using a blush (not that there’s anything wrong with that.) Apply it on the areas that the sun would normally kiss: forehead, top of nose, tops of cheeks, chin. Kind of like reverse contouring.

6) Finish off with a translucent setting powder and setting spray to hold the look for the rest of the day.

If you’re interested in watching a really good application of men’s makeup, follow Bob Herzog on Facebook. He is a news anchor out of Ohio and does his daily makeup videos for his fans. You can also find more videos on YouTube, though I will advise that they may be more complex with their steps.

Another Opportunity

(Source: Fresh Prince of Bel Air, NBC.)

The Universe works in very mysterious ways. Not only was I offered an opportunity to audition for a film, now a videographer friend of mine wants to work on a project with me.

This time, it’s a horror scene that I would film with another person. No pay, BUT he’s giving me the footage for my reel!

I mentioned in a previous post about productions that can’t pay their actors, but have the audacity to not hire them without a reel, and the only compensation they offer is more reel footage. It made no sense. My friend, who offered me this project, is doing this the CORRECT way by making beneficial for both of us.

I will give credit where credit is due. He watched my Instagram stories where I talk and film all of the time and that was a form of a reel for him. Don’t be mistaken though, I would never be able to pull those stories together into a professional reel to send to casting directors. However, the industry is changing and more casting decisions are being made based upon how strong your social media following is.

I’m excited about this opportunity, and a little suspicious about why everything I’ve wanted to do since January, is only now forming a month before I’m supposed to leave.

(Source: Facebook.)

How It Always Works Out

(Source: Yuri!!! On Ice, Mitsurou Kubo.)

This morning I received an invite to audition for a role on an indie film that would be shooting next month. The timing comes right after I complain about my career going stagnant, which now renders that post null and void.

There’s no guarantee that I will get the part, however, the fact that the director reached out to me is important.

So what is the film?

It’s about a young woman who has major relationship failures with except for a meaningful relationship with another woman in her early twenties. I was offered to play one of the supporting roles in this film. The best part is, it’s a paying role too.

YES. This is the dream. To play a speaking part in a film or television show and actually getting compensated for it.

The only issue is that the schedule may roll into when I’m supposed to leave the country. Who knows what will happen, but it’s an opportunity I feel I couldn’t turn down. Prayers and fingers crossed for the best possible outcome.

My Career Is Stagnant At The Moment…

(Taken late last month.)

There’s not much I can do about it. What I can do is take stock of where I’m at now:

•SAG eligible

•A decent theatre resume

•A film credit

•Nominated for a regional award

That’s what I have for the time being, though I managed to get this done at a rapid pace of 3 years (SAG alone takes some people a decade.)

Right now, the only thing I have going on is my YouTube channel until I work another film in 2019. I’ll try to keep this page updated on any industry related things that may come up in the meantime.

Poor Casting Choice

(Source: Mean Girls, Paramount Pictures.)

Everyone is up in arms about Scarlett Johansson playing a trans man in her newest film. This, coming after the backlash of whitewashing the role of Motoko Kusanagi from ‘Ghost in the Shell.’ I don’t dislike her, though there are some things about her association with Woody Allen to be problematic. I don’t think this role is right for her.

Before I go any further, let me admit that I have played roles that did not fit my cultural background, gender, sexual orientation, or age group. If an actor does their job well, then you should know them by the role they embody more than the person themselves. However, Scarlett Johansson has reached the point in several of her roles where she is “Scarlett” in a film, and not the character she is playing. Therefore, the character of Dante Gill will not be portrayed correctly.

Now if it were up to me to find an actual trans man, who looks like Gill, and can act, that would be my preference. It’s a challenge, however, since I would have an extremely small pool to work from. The closest I would be able cast is Lea DeLaria from ‘Orange is the New Black.’

The biggest issue I have with casting films in Hollywood is the cronyism associated with it. In this case Ms. Johansson is working with the same director from ‘GITS’, which is pissing people off further (myself included.) I get it: if you want to work consistently, it’s best to build a strong network and work with many of the same people. Roles like Gill need a little more thought and use of common sense before calling up your homie to take the part….

But I digress.

Big Things In The Works!!!

(Taken Monday after my epiphany.)

While I was rambling on one of my Instagram stories (saved in the highlights) about one of the films we showed at work: I thought about vlogging film and television reviews. A friend of mine suggested I use a separate platform as to not disrupt my current social media brand. Well that sparked something.

Currently I have an active YouTube channel that I use specifically for self-tape auditions. Since those links are usually private, I don’t have other content posted for the public to view. Until now.

Posting reviews is hardly anything new and there is plenty of competition out there for me. However, I just want a platform to air my grievances at other people over what I should actually be doing myself…work in the film industry. That is the premise. You are going to watch an actress who is also trained in the technical side of film, bitch and complain about why the production was bad, while also praising what’s good about it.

Don’t expect it to be comedic. Comedy is a precious skill afforded to few and its not my forte. My biggest hope is that it’s relatable and informative. Just like my blog.

I’m excited aren’t you?

Some Good Things

(Taken yesterday before my casting call.)

As I stated in the post previous to this one, I was a little nervous about what the day would bring for me on Friday. It turned out well.

First, there was some confusion about my shift in the morning. Even though I offered to cover a person’s serving shift and they said ok, apparently they asked someone else too and didn’t bother to tell me. I would have been annoyed if it wasn’t for the fact that I had something to do immediately after that shift. I could have cared less. I just wanted to go home and prepare.

Having a sudden breather helped big time. Yes, I have done plenty of runway auditions, but still I was dead set on impressing this person because I want to work with them in any capacity. Taking that time allowed me to soothe my nerves.

Later on at the audition, it was a good group of people. The models, the casting crew, they had a good energy and it didn’t feel competitive or chaotic. I did my walk and afterwards we got to take pictures with the leader herself (which is featured on my Instagram take a look!)

I’m hoping for the best outcome, whether it’s to work on the project as a model or as crew. Fingers crossed 🤞🏽